With a record of serving on various health promotion advisory groups, Anita Keestra believes that it is time to take up large responsibilities and hence is a Labour Party candidate for a post at the Counties Manukau District Health Board.
“We face several challenges in our area and need strong advocates at the District Health Board to address the concerns of our communities. A stronger link should be established between the people and those who take decisions on health matters,” she said.
Her career as Business Development Manager at the Manukau Institute of Technology, her role as a Justice of Peace, a community worker for well over 25 years and penchant to end disparities in the delivery of healthcare services were among the factors that motivated her to become a contestant for the District Health Board.
“I am committed to the empowerment of women who are victims of family violence, for they are at greater risk of suffering from mental health problems. I also believe in the power of people to transform their lives and take charge of their health and wellbeing,” she said.
Closer to communities
Her professional and social assignments have brought her closer to multi-ethnic communities, including Maori, Pacifica and South East Asians and hence she understands their problems, challenges and aspiration.
As a Member of the Auckland Council Ethnic Peoples Advisory Panel on her second term (she was the Deputy Chair earlier) and as a Trustee on the Board of Trustees of the Papatoetoe High School for the past six years have given her additional insight into our communities.